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Curated research library of TV news clips regarding the NSA, its oversight and privacy issues, 2009-2014

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Primary curation & research: Robin Chin, Internet Archive TV News Researcher; using TV News Archive service.

Speakers

Barton Gellman
Journalist, contributing to the Washington Post
KQED 05/20/2014
Narrator: The story concerned another NSA program called PRISM. Documents showed how beginning in 2007, nine Internet companies were cooperating with the NSA. Gellman wanted to make sure his reporting wouldn't damage national security. Gellman: We very much did want to know what they thought would do concrete harm, and how, and why. And the U.S. government asked me not to publish the U.S. government asked me not to publish the names of the nine companies that were supplying information to the government in the PRISM program. And I said, "Why?" Their argument was that if we publish the names, then the companies would be less inclined to cooperate. And I guess we agreed to disagree on that one. Audio TV reporting: The Washington Post is reporting that the... Narrator: The Post went ahead.
Barton Gellman
Journalist, contributing to the Washington Post
KQED 05/20/2014
Narrator: The PRISM revelations reached beyond the collection of phone records. This was about the acquisition of content from tens of thousands of NSA targets. Audio TV reporting: Did you check your account on Gmail? Secret spying program is... Gellman: The PRISM program is not about metadata. It's about content. It's the photos and videos you send. It's the words of your emails. It's the sounds of your voice on a Skype call. It's all the files you have stored on a cloud drive service. It's content, it's everything.
Barack Obama
President
KQED 05/20/2014
Harding: In Hong Kong, Snowden was sitting with three people under contract with the Guardian. They were sitting there on the bed watching the reaction on CNN. Obama: They are not looking at people's names and they're not looking at content. Greenwald: Obama was saying the NSA isn't listening to the telephone calls or reading the emails of Americans, which is absolutely wrong. There were documents that we had that proved President Obama's claims in that regard were false. And we just could tell, as well, that he at that moment didn't have any idea of the true magnitude of what was coming, given how dismissive and casual his tone was. Obama: Thank you very much, guys.
Aaron Maté
Democracy NOW Producer
LINKTV 05/20/2014
Maté: A new report reveals The National Security Agency is recording every single phone call made in the Bahamas, even though the U.S. has said the Caribbean nation poses little to no threat to Americans. The story is based on documents leaked by Edward Snowden that describe a classified program called SOMALGET that was put in place by the NSA without the knowledge or consent of the Bahamian government. Instead, the website Intercept reports the agency seems to have obtained access through the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. One NSA document says the over purposeful recording calls in the Bahamas is “for legitimate commercial service.” But the same document adds “our covert mission is the provision of SIGINT” or signal intelligence. Goodman: Documents released by Snowden show the system is part of a broader program known as Mystic.
Amy Goodman
Host and Executive Producer for Democracy Now
LINKTV 05/20/2014
Goodman: Documents released by Snowden show the system is part of a broader program known as Mystic which also monitors the telephone communications in Mexico, the Philippines, Kenya, as well as one other country which The Intercept says it’s not naming in response to specific credible concerns that doing so could lead to increased violence. For more, we are joined by the story's lead author, Ryan Devereaux, a staff reporter with The Intercept . His new story with Glenn Greenwald and Laura Poitras is
Aaron Maté
Democracy NOW Producer
LINKTV 05/20/2014
Maté: Our story details the NSA program called Mystic, first detailed in a Washington Post story. Mystic was developed by the NSA in 2009. It’s variously sponsored through a number of subprograms which are controlled by the NSA's commercial solution center. This is the NSA wing that works with the NSA’s secret corporate partners. As you know the NSA wouldn’t be able to function if it wasn’t for the corporate partners that it relies on to gain access to communications networks in various countries. It‘s also co-sponsored by the CIA, Central Intelligence Agency and the Drug Enforcement Administration, The DEA. So as you mentioned, this program has gained access in Mexico, Kenya, the Philippines, the Bahamas, and one of the country that The Intercept is not naming at this time.
Ryan Devereaux
The Intercept Reporter
LINKTV 05/20/2014
Devereaux: We had for weeks, as we tried to report this story, trying to determine whether or not it was responsible to name this country. The NSA and government did not want us to name any of the countries. We named four of them. With this final country, we came to the conclusion that naming it would very likely increase risk for people on the ground. And as you know, Amy, this is one of those decisions that, as a journalist covering national security stories, is very difficult to make. We don’t take it lightly at all. But when it comes to potential for people being killed, we take that seriously. Unfortunately, that’s about as much as I can say. We did, however, name a number of other countries that the government does not want us to name, including the Bahamas.
Ryan Devereaux
The Intercept Reporter
LINKTV 05/20/2014
Devereaux: It is important to understand this story, the difference between Mystic and SOMALGET. Mystic is the commercial center program that provides legitimate commercial services to foreign governments while collecting covertly on the side and in the background signals intelligence on those countries. So this program targets the mobile communications networks of these countries. Basically what the NSA does is sneak in there through its commercial provider and pullout signals intelligence. The second program, SOMALGET, which is active in the Bahamas, is even more robust. What SOMALGET does is attacks the mobile communications network and sucks up the actual content of calls on that line.
Ryan Devereaux
The Intercept Reporter
LINKTV 05/20/2014
Devereaux: So in the Bahamas, the NSA is able to pick up every single phone call on the mobile communications network and essentially house those calls for up to 30 days, allowing U.S. analyst to go back and retrieve the communications of people who they were targeting. The idea is that they could listen in on conversations that they were not looking for in the first place
Ryan Devereaux
The Intercept Reporter
LINKTV 05/20/2014
Devereaux: So what the NSA has been able to do here in the Bahamas is basically collect everything that’s there, be able to basically resurrect conversations at will, and they're using this as a test bed, basically – this the exact the phrase that the NSA uses in the documents. The Bahamas is being used as a test for implementation of these systems elsewhere.
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